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Recap / Star Wars: The Clone Wars S1E3 "Shadow of Malevolence"

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Easy is the path to wisdom for those not blinded by themselves.

Anakin utilizes new long-range Y-wing bombers to lead a bold strike on General Grievous' warship the Malevolence and its destructive weapon. As General Grievous uses the Malevolence to terrorize the Republic's medical base, the Jedi rush to defend Republic space. With help from his Padawan Ahsoka and Master Plo Koon, Anakin leads a bold strike mission into enemy territory.


  • Ace Pilot: Anakin and Plo Koon are very skilled starfighter pilots. Lampshaded by Ahsoka:
    Ahsoka: Master, you can make it, but everyone else is getting shot down.
  • Bittersweet Ending: This episode ends with Nala Se (a Kaminoan who is the leader of the medical center) thanking Anakin for the many thousand lives his squadron saved. Anakin's answer makes it clear that he's very bitter about the losses it took for them to achieve this objective.
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  • Bus Full of Innocents: The Republic's medical center serves the role as this trope.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Come on, who honestly thought that Matchstick's damaged engine wasn't going to cost him his life?
  • Foregone Conclusion: Anakin's plan of attack involves bombing the Malevolence's bridge to kill Grievous. Since Grievous cannot die as a result of appearing in Revenge of the Sith, this plan is not going to work.
  • Foreshadowing: It's mentioned that the medical station and the nebula are in the vicinity of Naboo, which sends ships to help with the evacuation. This will be important in the following episode.
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Lampshaded by the battle droids:
    Battle Droid 1: This is a lot more fun when they're not shooting back.
    Battle Droid 2: I still can't seem to hit anything.
    [Grievous smacks the battle droid's head off in anger at its stupidity]
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  • Mauve Shirt: Matchstick, who is one of the clone pilots in Shadow Squadron, dies due to the damage sustained to his Y-Wing.
  • Oh, Crap!: Plo Koon's reaction when he discovers that the route Anakin is taking the squadron on is the Balmorra Run, otherwise known as the nesting ground of the neebray mantas.
  • Outrun the Fireball: Anakin's attack strategy is based on the theory that the small and agile fighter bombers can evade the ion cannon's fire.
  • Space Clouds: Anakin's plan is to take a shortcut through a nebula to arrive to the medical center before the Malevolence.
  • Space Friction: Matchstick's Y-Wing is destroyed because a damaged part of the bomber can't take the acceleration when he tries to avoid the shot of the ion cannon. Also, whenever the ion cannon hits a ship and short-circuits its engines, the ship immediately halts dead in space. These latter cases might be justified ones, as a concentrated globe of ions indeed has friction.
  • Space Is an Ocean: Zigzagged. Sometimes, Anakin's squadron plays it straight with zero or minimal vector changes. However, they occasionally remember that they can go in any direction, but they then have to deal with Space Friction, as noted above.
  • Space Whale: The neebray manta colony living in the nebula are essentially this trope due to their sizes and sounds.
  • Unspoken Plan Guarantee: Anakin lays out the plan of attack at a briefing. Naturally, things do not go as planned in the actual battle.
  • We Have Reserves: Grievous fires the ion cannon at Anakin's squadron, paying no heed to his own droid starfighters in the area.
  • The X of Y: "Shadow of Malevolence".


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